Kotabaru, S Kalimantan (AntaranewsKalsel) - A 170 million US $ smelter processing plant in Sebuku Island, Kotabaru District, South Kalimantan, owned by PT Sebuku Iron Lateritic Ores (SILO ) has ceased production since November 2017.
"The smelter factory has now stopped production because the company has not been mining raw materials in the form of iron ore since November 2017," said SILO Operations Manager Henry Yulianto, Thursday.
He said since November SILO has not done the mining, because it is still waiting for permission to extend the License of Borrowing of Forest Area (IPPKH) from the South Kalimantan Government.
Due to the cessation of such operations, SILO management was forced to lay off about 500 employees. However, the rights of the employees remain fulfilled intact.
Kotabaru Expert Staff for Community and Human Resource H Hasbi M Thawab, during a coordination meeting at the DPRD, explained that in the location of PT SILO in Sebuku, there is no activity anymore.
"We regret, the smelter factory that has been built so solidly and built at a very large cost is now not working," he said.
In fact, if the iron ore deposit in Kotabaru is exhausted, the company can bring in raw materials from outside because its factory has been built on Sebuku Island, he added.
Hasbi asked all parties to be able to jointly help the problems faced by SILO related to the extension of IPPKH permit.
Henry added, his side received many offers from capital owners to increase investment in Kotabaru. However, the investor's desire cannot be served yet, because SILO itself still faces unresolved issues.
He hopes, Kotabaru and the Provincial Government support the policy of President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) in facilitating the entry of investment in the region.
SILO in Kotabaru is not only a new entry but has been there since 2004 and even has invested up to trillions of rupiah. Its existence in Kotabaru was very felt by the community, especially people in Sebuku Island and its surroundings.
Thousands of local workforce have been employed by companies, the "down-to-earth" CSR program has also had a positive impact on the world of education, sports, people's economy, socio-religious, and others.
Corporate HRD of PT SILo Rika Sambiran explained, in November 2017 SILO management planned to lay-off the workers because the smelter industry cannot operate due to no raw materials.
"The plan is submitted to employees, but until now the company also did not do layoffs," he said.
Around 500 employees still hope there will be no layoffs and expect the company to resolve the issue that caused it to not operate.
Until January 2018 there are still 873 people working in the company. A total 350 of contractors workers and about 533 are company employees.
"About 75 percent of these employees are locals," he said.